Suggest me a full tube head

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by MichiBass, Aug 29, 2013.

  1. I want to buy an (new or used) full tube head, and I am looking for your suggestions. Specs I am looking for:

    - 70 - 150 W
    - simple layout: Gain, Bass, Mids, Highs, Master Volume
    - under 40 - 45 lbs.
    - under 1500 $

    I am also considering older no-name amps, so just suggest everything you know of.


  2. Find a peavey Road Master. All tube. 160 watts. Two channels. Yes it is a guitar head but with the thick switch engaged it has plenty of low end for bass.

    I love mine.
  3. Bowe


    Apr 1, 2013
    Ampeg V4B old or new.
  4. Seems like this thing is going to be the one to have.

    Although it will have to be the new one for the OP criteria. The new one has a gain control whereas the old only has master volume.
  5. Yeah, my only thought is that it is made in China...
  6. Talkbass is slacking today. 5 replies and nobody has chimed in with "just get a Sansamp*, they sound more like a tube amp than a tube amp does." Well, I guess I took care of it.

    Old amp, ~150 watts, Mesa/Boogie D-180. While the controls are basic, there are a few tricks to them but many TB members can educate you if you pick one up. I haven't weighed mine but others have claimed 45 lbs.

    Not to put down V4B, just giving another option.

    * or whatever pedal the cool kids are using these days

    Your location may limit your options, and there may be some amps available to you that most TB members haven't heard of.
  7. Mr. Foxen

    Mr. Foxen Commercial User

    Jul 24, 2009
    Bristol, UK
    Amp tinkerer at Ampstack
    Sound City 120.
  8. worxforme

    worxforme Self Actualized Bad Speller

    Dec 10, 2009
    LAnsing MI
    Trace Elliot V4
    Mesa Buster
  9. 3rdcurve


    Dec 26, 2008
    Sullivan, MO
    Just outside your specs is the Mesa Boogie Buster.

    200 watts
    50ish lbs
    Simple controls but adds a foot switchable graphic EQ
  10. Blairb


    Nov 1, 2007
    A V4-B fits your criteria as an all tube, but a GK MBF500 fits your budget and will probably satisfy any and all tube sparkle. The Bugera BVV3000I is also worth a look, Ampeg purists will slam it as a Behringer misfit, but it is an all tube brute and for a 300 watt head is priced well below the new V4-B, both Ampeg and Bugera are made in China.
  11. Blairb


    Nov 1, 2007
    Just throwing it out there...the GK MBF500 weighs in at just under 6lbs.
  12. Groovy_Gravy


    Apr 26, 2012

    ampeg v4b either vintage or new... your pick
  13. nshuman


    Sep 4, 2012
    Traynor YBA200-2.

    It is 200 watts, but under 41 lbs. Would fir in your price range new, much lower used.

    In your price range you could even get the YBA300 which is 300 watts in case you ever need to play in an arena/stadium type of situation :)
  14. droskobass


    Oct 8, 2007
    Montreal, Canada
    Former Part-Time, Non-Commission Employee MOOG Audio
    Vintage traynor YBA-3. 129 watts of awesome. Master volume is only available on the early 70's models (not the 60's ones)

    retube it, get a simple recap and bias and you'll be blown away!

    cost will be from $400-$800 for the head and $85 -$100 for the tubes and maybe between $70- $150 for the rebias recap (but go to a well respected recommended tech)

    so between 600 and 1100

    If you want new, the only new all tube head i'd buy is a Divided by thirteen, it's 50% over your budget but they're incredibly well built and truly world class (he has 3 models for now but will do custom "shorter versions" too.)

    call Fred Tacone and ask him about his amps then go to your local Divided by thirteen dealer and talk financing. you'll be in heaven. good luck
  15. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Most of the suggestions mentioned do not meet your weight requirements. Most tube heads (especailly older ones) weigh more than 45 lbs. If you can live with a few more pounds, you can pick up a vintage Ampeg V4, or V4B (they are virtually identical) for about $600 give or take. Then you can spend a few hundred getting a cap job, cleaning, and retube. Enjoy your newly serviced and incredible sounding amp and keep the change.

    Mine is a Magnavox era (early 70s) V4 with the original tubes and it is a joy to stand in front of. The thing just sounds great.
  16. Freddels

    Freddels Musical Anarchist

    Apr 7, 2005
    Sutton, MA
    Either the new Ampeg V4-B reissue or the Fender 100T fits your description of what you want.
  17. eban3

    eban3 Supporting Member

    Apr 29, 2007
    Palm Bay FL
    why would you want to lug one of those around , tubes have no affect on the output stage of the signal , buy a hybrid
  18. Bassman 100 or 135. You can get them for around half your budget and they sound like auditory awesome.
  19. Right_Butterscotch64


    Oct 18, 2012
    The peavey vb-2 is a 225watt all tube bass amp. It's only like 57 pounds I think? And it's only 899$.
  20. DethByDoom


    Sep 23, 2012
    So power tubes produce the same sound if they're working hard or hardly at all? I guess all that talk of power tube grind is all bs?
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Jun 17, 2021

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